I spent less than 12 hours in Iowa this week. I was rather occupied with family and friends, a good way to spend the week.
Sunday and Monday I was in Wisconsin with the family. I slept in, spent time with my family, and did a lot of good talking. For whatever reason I have some of my best conversations with my family. They are the deepest most intimate most informed conversations I typically have. I think that is because we spent so much time together. I feel that with any relationship spending time with each other is incredibly important. In other words, without spending time with each other we can not develop the relationship. In my head relationships are strengthened by the exchange of ideas, feelings, and emotions. Simply seeing my actions on the Internet does not strengthen our relationship. The point being, relationships take time and effort and are certainly not always easy but persistence leads to a more honest and understanding relationship.
Tuesday I headed out to Colorado. That night I had a private brewery tour at the Denver branch of the Breckenridge Brewery. I might post some video that I took.
The next day I met up with my friend G from WPI after hitting up Movement for some V0 and V1 bouldering. We had steak and headed up into the mountains. After four restless hours of sleep in my van in a windstorm and an hour changing clothing we headed up the hill at 3 AM. The going went well until we got above tree line and kept losing the trail. Finally a half mile farther up the mountain than I expected we were getting pelted with 50-60mph wind gusts and turned around. We had brunch at The Mountaineer, the classic Estes Park breakfast joint without yuppies (myself excepted). I spent the rest of the day buying another pair of PrAna pants, blogging from Amante north, and running part way up Green Mountain.
Friday I took the day off from the mountains. Seriously I didn't leave my friends house until about 3PM to run ten miles. The night just got interesting from there. I met up with my friend L who was going through a rough time the last time we were physically in each others presence. I am so excited to see the change and maturity in her now! Then my host B and his girlfriend J and the two of us had a double decker Papa Murphys pizza and a s'more pizza. Then we went to a biker bar. Yep. It's similar to what you imagine. You have to be in the club or a friend to get in. Some people have guns. There was a lot of smoking and my clothing still smells terrible, or at least smells of the stench of an enlightening experience. Without getting anyone in trouble, as I laugh sitting here in my apartment, I had three drinks, was not the DD and was clearly not in a state to drive so I didn't. Everyone was very nice to us. Ohh Europeans...
The next day we had a very late start driving to Dillion to stay at yet another friends condo. The winds were up to 100 mph at some of the resorts so no one was out skiing. I did get in a nice hour run along the lake in rather cold and breezy conditions. That night we started off at the Breckenridge Breckenridge Brewery. Due to B being an employee we ate huge burgers and drinks for nearly nothing. Then we had a private tour once again and I took some more video. It was cool because that is where the cutting edge of new brews is made and it's just two guys in the basement and attic of a restaurant in the mountains. I still don't drink beer. Plus I was the designated driver for the night. I was just amazed how nice our Breckenridge hosts were to us. We didn't deserve that.
After the tour the brewer took us to Trattorias or something where his wife works and the owner greeted us. All of the Italian pictures on the restaurant walls the brewer S and his wife took on their honeymoon in Italy. We talked more and watched the fireworks which I hear were better than Breck has for July 4th. After that, having had a meal, bought some clothing, and having a number of drinks we were out about $30.
From there we went to Ollie's or something, a dive bar (young people, sticky floors, loud modern music). Once again I am laughing thinking about it. I had a great time and so much happened it deserves a longer article. Finally after midnight I drove my stumbling friends to the condo in Dillon.
I went out to climb and ski and I didn't really do either last week. But I did develop several of my relationships. Life is about relationships and I easily lose sight of that in pursuit of my own selfish egotistical goals. Fortunately my family and friends keep me social. To my family and friends: Thank You!! 2011 was an amazing year for me! I have so much blog ammunition to reveal over the next few weeks. 2012? It is looking like it might be even better...